Standing up for the Rights of Construction Workers
Professional architects are required to pass a licensure test in order to provide services in North Carolina. They enjoy the privileges that come with licensure, but are also held to the highest standards by their profession. Oversights in design, recommendation for inappropriate materials or taking shortcuts on specifications means they can be held liable for damages in the event of construction defects or failure to meet required building codes.
If you are a property developer, homeowner or commercial building owner in North Carolina and are facing unexpected costs because of your architect’s negligence, you may have a legitimate claim for damages through the legal system. Construction litigation lawyer Joel Rhine of Rhine Law Firm, P.C. is an experienced trial lawyer with more than 30 years of experience in the construction litigation field. His cases have involved:
- Building and site defects and defective materials and products
- Pella window lawsuits
- Design oversights and unsafe building features
- Construction contract performance issues
Supporting a Claim for Architectural Negligence
Do you have grounds to file a claim for architectural negligence? A full investigation into the facts will reveal whether you have valid grounds to bring a case against an architect or architectural firm. The various types of architect negligence can include the following situations:
- Breach of contract.
- Negligent preparation of plans.
- Negligent preparation of specifications.
- A deviation from standard architectural practices.
- Architectural design that created unusual risks..
- An infringement upon the rights of a third party.
- Design flaws that put third persons in danger.
- A deviation from standard architectural practices.
- Failure to comply with applicable local and state laws.
- Architectural design that created unreasonable danger.
- Failure to conform to client instructions and agreements.
- Failure to exercise reasonable care usually exercised by other members of the architectural profession.
Evidence to Support a Case of Architectural Negligence
To develop a lawsuit to present in mediation, arbitration, or in court, it will be necessary to present evidence from expert witnesses. This evidence must make it clear that the architect or firm failed to perform their duties professionally, as another architect in the same field would have done, when faced with the same situation. If a design was seriously flawed, and led to unusual risks or losses, it must be established that these factors were the result of a flawed architectural design. Each case brings its own set of issues; the first step is a full review of the facts. Once the extent of the damage is assessed, our attorney at the Rhine Law Firm, P.C. will access experts in the field to review and evaluate the plans, workmanship, and any other factor that may have resulted in monetary or personal damages.
Liability: Holding Architects and Architectural Firms Accountable
Designing a new building, updating a structure, or performing renovations are challenging jobs. Building owners count on architects to provide plans and specifications that meet all local, state, and federal laws, and are safe, and do not pose a risk, or lead to damage to property or persons. When the project fails to meet professional standards, the architect may be held liable for the damages to the owner of the property.
Architects carry errors and omissions insurance to protect against legal threats; your case may initially be sent to arbitration or mediation. The skills in which your case is presented is a critical point in the outcome, whether resolved in or out of court.
Breach of Contract
Breach of contract cases can be related to an architect failing to include certain features or aspect of the design to the bid package that should have been included at the time of bid, leading to increased, unexpected costs. To be proven, cases of omissions that led to higher costs will require the help of an attorney who is well-versed in this area of law. For cases that involve design errors, the full extent of the damage must be valued in pursuing a legal case against an architect or design firm. Each case is unique in the facts about what occurred, and the value of the monetary damages that will be pursued.
It is advised that you contact the Rhine Law Firm, P.C. to discuss your case and get guidance in how to move forward with a claim against an architect or firm to recover monetary damages. We are skilled litigators, and have a breadth of understanding in this area of the law. We can help you move forward, and our knowledge and experience could be of great benefit to you in the outcome of your case.
While many construction participants have insurance policies that cover a frustratingly small number of the damages typically incurred by an owner, architect policies are usually more generous. This doesn’t mean the cases are simple. Instead, the insurance companies hire smart and effective lawyers who will fight you with the insurance company’s money. You can even the scales by hiring a competent construction law firm.
Know your rights before you start a building project. Your residential or commercial building project may be the most significant financial investment in your lifetime. Reduce your risk of disputes and litigation by knowing your rights before you start the process. We offer legal consultations to discuss your concerns about protecting your financial interests. With sound legal counsel in your corner, you can have confidence in what to expect from your licensed architect, engineer or contractor.
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